Ghana coach Kwesi Appiah has opened up on the money issues threatening to wreck Ghana’s final group game at the world cup against Portugal and says it has left him a worried man.
Appiah’s mandatory pre-game press conference at the Estadio Nacional in Brasilia ahead of the meeting against Portugal was dominated by questions about the threat by Ghana’s players to boycott training if they were not paid their appearance fees.
The Ghana coach admitted the issue which delayed the team’s departure from their Maceio base to Brasilia on Tuesday and scuppered his training plans later on arrival in Brazil’s stunning capital.
As one journalist after another asked Appiah about the issues of bonuses, appearance fees and what it does to his side in the football sense, he admitted he was caught up in a bad situation.
“Every coach will not want to be in this situation where players are requesting for money when you have such an important game to play,” Appiah said.
“It’s not the best for me. For the past two days I have had sleepless nights. I have not been able to close my eyes,” he added. “Normally you sort this out before a major tournament. You can’t keep telling the players the money will come when it does not come. It is unfortunate I find myself in this situation.”
Appiah also responded to reports that he has had a major falling out with Kevin-Prince Boateng, claiming there was a disagreement in training which had been resolved.
The off-field drama that has surrounded Ghana this week will takes the shine off what was a remarkable performance against Germany in Fortaleza.
Appiah is hopeful however that it does not take away from the ability of his side to play football against the Portuguese on Thursday.
Ghana must beat Portugal and hope the USA loses to Germany to stand any remote chance of avoiding elimination from the group stages for the first time in three world cup appearances.